Dad’s brutally honest parenting rant
It's not often a stay-at-home parent on Instagram is brutally honest about the good, the bad and the totally ugly side of their gig.
Usually, Insta-parents relish in sharing filtered photos of their children, wholesome treats whipped up in their stunning kitchens, handmade gifts and messages of tender love directed at their babies who, for obvious reasons, are not able to read them.
But Mike Julianelle, from Brooklyn, isn't interested in broadcasting his parental prowess to the world because he believes he's just "not cut out for this" whole dad thing.
Mike, 42, hates being a dad and has built a career by telling people all about it.
"Don't worry, I don't hate my kids. I just hate parenting," the father-of-two said.
Formerly a marketing writer, Mike now endures a #stayathomelife with his two sons, who he dubs Detective Munch, 8, and The Hammer, 2, while his wife, Heather, is the primary earner.
"I don't want to be a stay-at-home parent," he wrote this month to his Instagram followers, who now exceed 80,000.
My toddler ran into my bedroom to tell me that he’d found the candy he’d lost a few minutes earlier, excitedly waving his arms around in triumph, when suddenly the candy flew out of his hand, across the room, and he lost it again. Little dumbass.— Dad and Buried (@DadandBuried) July 17, 2019
The father-of-two said the responsibilities surrounding the existence of his boys were "destroying my social life".
As a way to cope with his new role, Mike publicly complains about parenting - while also offering advice on living with kids - on Instagram, Twitter, his blog, and a recently launched podcast he calls Dad and Buried.
"I just talk trash about parenting and my kids," he explained.
His candid, and often hilarious, insights into the challenges of child rearing have won him thousands of fans around the world, many of whom relate to the frustration and exhaustion that comes with being a stay-at-home parent.
But others have criticised his approach, describing him as "sick" and nasty to his children.
In one tweet, Mike explained the importance of teaching children there are consequences for their actions.
"This morning my son threw his iPad across the room in a fit of rage and now he doesn't understand why I won't let him use it," he wrote.
"IT'S CALLED CONSEQUENCES, MOTHERF***ER!"
I'M NOT CUT OUT FOR THIS
Mike is currently caring for his sons during their summer school holidays and claimed things hadn't got off to a great start.
"It's day two of my summer as a stay-at-home dad and I've already lost it on my kids," he said.
"Actually, I lost it at day 1.5. I'm not cut out for this."
Doing stuff with your kids is like going to the gym: you don’t want to have to do it, and you don’t enjoy it *while* you’re doing it, but once you’ve actually done it? You feel like a million dollars.— Dad and Buried (@DadandBuried) July 17, 2019
In a mammoth post that has since attracted global attention, Mike revealed he didn't want to do be a parent because he lacks the temperament, patience and interest in the job.
"Circumstances being what they are, and summer being what it is, someone has to stay home with my kids all day," he wrote on Instagram.
"Mum … has done it for years, and now she's working and I'm not, so I'm back in the saddle."
But reluctance "and unsuitability" aside, Mike admitted he had no choice but to get better at it.
View this post on Instagram
It’s day two of my summer as a stay-at-home dad and I’ve already lost it on my kids. . Actually, I lost it at day 1.5. I’m not cut out for this. . I knew it 6 years ago when I did it for the first time, I knew it a month ago when it was looming again, I knew it yesterday when things were going well, and I definitely knew it today when I yelled at my 8yo and carried him to another room because he wouldn’t stop complaining about something he actually wanted to do. . I don’t want to be a stay-at-home parent. I don’t want to have to find ways to fill my kids’ days all summer. I don’t want to plan, I don’t want to pack stuff, I don’t want to herd them places, I don’t want to go places. . I don’t have the temperament, I don’t have the patience, I don’t have the interest. . I also don’t have a choice. . Circumstances being what they are, and summer being what it is, someone has to stay home with my kids all day. Mom and Buried has done it for years, and now she's working and I'm not, so I’m back in the saddle. Reluctance (and unsuitability) aside, I have no choice but to get better at it. . They don’t need to know how stressed I am, they don’t deserve a dad who’s grumpy and frustrated before the day has even begun, and most of all, they don’t deserve a boring summer. . Summer is sacred. And it's usually Mom and Buried's territory. But it's on me now. . No, we might not be able to send them to camp or take them on fancy trips, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t things to do. And it’s on me to do them. More than that, it’s on me to do them with a smile on my face. Or at least without constantly yelling at them. . So far, things aren’t going so great. But there’s nowhere to go but up! . This is one of the primary challenges of parenting. Not letting your grownup stress impact your kids' childhood innocence. We all have struggles, and sometimes the toll they take is going to manifest itself, often in ways you don't even realize. . I guess the good news is: I do realize it. Which makes it even more crucial that I manage it, and do whatever I can to prevent my kids from catching on. . I've gotta fake it until *they* make it. But what else is new? . #stayathomelife
Mike also admitted he had accidentally punched his eight-year-old son in the face during a round of wrestling, leaving him with bloodied nose.
View this post on Instagram
Yesterday, I punched my son in the face and gave him a bloody nose. My summer is not going well. . Before you call CPS on me, it was an accident! . We were playing his favorite game, ATTACK!, during which the three of us pile onto my bed and roughhouse a bit. It mostly entails them jumping on me while I lie there as motionless as possible. It’s the closest thing I get to a nap these days! . The bulk of the game involves pillows. They pile pillows on top of me and try to pin me down, and I play dead before suddenly bursting free and playfully attacking them. I usually just swing pillows around and nudge the two of them down, taking care to prevent them from falling off the bed or knocking heads. . They love this game and have spent the last month-plus begging me to play it. Due to some leg and back pain (I’m 42), I’d been unable to oblige, but I’m feeling better. Also, I’m now home with them all day, so I decided it was time to get back in the ring. They were thrilled. . ATTACK! is one of those things that only Dad can do, and it’s a fun way to bond with my boys (a d to and sneak a few minutes of sweet lie-down time). . Unfortunately, my return bout ended abruptly. When I burst free from the pillow pile, my hand sprung loose and I accidentally clocked my 8yo in the face! He wasn’t hurt - or should I say, he wasn’t injured - but I hit him just perfectly enough to cause a bloody nose. He didn’t react well, not that many 8yos would to blood pouring down their face, and some screaming ensued. . Luckily, I was able to stay calm - something of a rarity for me, so score one for Dad! - and get him to the bathroom for some tissues and nose-pinching, along with a lot of reassurances that no, he was not going to die from a bloody nose. . It didn’t take long for me to stop the bleeding and calm him down, thankfully, and his blood spattered clothes are now something of a badge of honor. . The good news is, he’s fine, and recovered quickly. The bad news is, I have a lot of laundry to do, and fast. The best news is, almost as soon as he changed clothes, he asked to play ATTACK! again. And this time I have even more of a reason to lie motionless on the bed!
BUT I DON'T HAVE A CHOICE
According to Mike, he understands "I also don't have a choice".
"I don't want to have to find ways to fill my kids' days all summer," he wrote.
"I don't want to plan, I don't want to pack stuff, I don't want to herd them places, I don't want to go places."
Despite his grumblings online, Mike is a devoted, albeit crass, father, who offers a realistic glimpse into the world of parenting.
"They don't deserve a dad who's grumpy and frustrated before the day has even begun, and most of all, they don't deserve a boring summer," he wrote.
"So far, things aren't going so great. But there's nowhere to go but up!"
YOU MAKE ME SICK
But Mike has received his fair share of criticism from people who take his rants literally and describe him as cruel and nasty.
"You make me sick! I hope to God your kids never read this!" one person wrote to him.
One man, who has been a stay-at-home dad for seven years, argued Mike "wasn't a hero or brave for admitting the truth".
"This post made me realise that men, including myself, are just weak and choose to b*tch and complain," he wrote.
"Stop over thinking it, get off social media, put your Xbox controller down and grow up."
Others, though, applauded Mike's "raw honesty" and have celebrated his tongue-in-cheek approach.
"I'm a stay at home mum who is currently very stressed and I needed this today," one fan wrote.
Another added: "I feel this all to the core."
"This post hit me in the feels," another parent wrote.
"Thanks for not making up cute sh*t for likes and giving parents complexes because of it."
Mike admitted every parent had struggles and days where they would rather not be a parent.
"I guess the good news is: I do realise it," he said.
"Which makes it even more crucial that I manage it and do whatever I can to prevent my kids from catching on."
"I've gotta fake it until *they* make it. But what else is new?"
Continue the conversation @Rhi_lani or email email@example.com
Give your kids Slinkys so they can have two minutes of fun and you can have 8 hours of fruitlessly trying to untangle them!— Dad and Buried (@DadandBuried) July 12, 2019
Despite my kids going at each other’s throats all morning, I somehow haven’t had enough high-pitched screaming yet today, so we’re taking them to a crowded public pool to make sure I get my fill.— Dad and Buried (@DadandBuried) July 14, 2019